The Pittsburgh Steelers and tough, hard-nosed defense go hand-in-hand. The team made a move to bolster that side of the ball as they're signing eight-time Pro Bowler and three-time First-Team All-Pro cornerback Patrick Peterson to a two-year contract worth $14 million that includes $5.85 million guaranteed, according to NFL Media on Monday.
The NFL veteran confirmed the move on CBS Sports HQ:
Peterson's 34 interceptions are tied for the most among active players with Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith, and the five he had in 2022 were tied for the fifth most in the NFL last season. Peterson's five interceptions in 2022, which he totaled at age 32, were the second most of his decorated career, behind only his seven-interception campaign in 2012.
The Steelers defense he is joining ranked 10th in the NFL in scoring defense in 2022, allowing 20.4 points per game. However, Peterson shores up a pass defense that ranked 13th in the league, allowing 330.4 passing yards per game. The 2010's All-Decade Team member posted the eighth-highest grade in coverage (79.7) in 2022, according to Pro Football Focus, a boost to a unit that allowed a 58% completion rate to opposing wide receivers, the lowest figure in the NFL. Peterson expressed interest in the Steelers' AFC North rival Cincinnati Bengals, the Dallas Cowboys and the NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles earlier on Monday on "The Adam Schefter Podcast."
When asked about how he would do playing outside in the cold for the first time in his career, given that he played homes games in domes both with the Arizona Cardinals for 10 seasons (2011-2020) and the Minnesota Vikings (2021-2022) for two seasons, Peterson pushed back on the idea that it will have any affect on him despite turning 33 on July 11.
"I'm a ball player, so wherever the ball lays, that's where we're going to play," Peterson said.